Jocelyn On the Significance of Nik Aziz’s Visit to Karpal Singh

January 30, 2013

Jocelyn On the Significance of Nik Aziz’s Visit to Karpal Singh

jocelynby Jocelyn Tan @

Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat made a significant visit to Karpal Singh’s house on Thaipusam day but behind the big smiles and the birthday cake for the PAS leader is the message that PAS is not quitting the Pakatan Rakyat coalition.

KARPAL Singh was still taking his bath when Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat and his entourage arrived at his house in Penang’s Western Road. It was the first time that the PAS leader was calling on the DAP leader, and everyone in the house was quite thrilled.

“My wife was banging on the bathroom door telling me to hurry up, that he is already here, he is inside the house. I think Nik Aziz must have heard it as well,” said the DAP chairman.

Nik Aziz, accompanied by Penang PAS commissioner Datuk Salleh Man, was about 15 minutes early although Karpal’s house lies smack along the kavadi route of the Thaipusam festivities.

The meeting of these two long-time adversaries is still the talk of their party Nikky and Karpisupporters today. Some loved it that the two men looked so cosy and congenial in the company of each other. Although both men had exchanged sharp words in the past, they greeted one another with megawatt smiles and held on to each others’ hands.

To Karpal, Nik Aziz is “the old man” (said fondly); after all, Karpal is only 72 to Nik Aziz’s 82 years. But others, especially some in PAS, were unsure what to make of it because Karpal has been a leading critic of PAS’ Islamic policies. This is the very same man who had declared “over my dead body” to PAS’ goal of setting up an Islamic state in Malaysia.

In fact, many in PAS think that Karpal ranks up there with MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek when it comes to criticising the theocratic policies of PAS. Let’s just say the two men are not the best loved figures among PAS members.

Harakahdaily played up the event, splashing photographs of Nik Aziz cutting a birthday cake surrounded by Karpal’s family and several other Pakatan Rakyat MPs and state assemblymen.

Utusan Malaysia also gave it the front-page treatment in its Monday edition, with the heading: “Hari jadi Nik Aziz di raikan dirumah Karpal Singh” (Nik Aziz’s birthday celebrated in Karpal Singh’s house). In fact, PAS dominated Utusan Malaysia’s front page that day because the lead story was “Nasharudin dipecat” — it was a report on PAS sacking its former deputy president Nasharudin Mat Isa from its Syura Council.

Nik Aziz had turned 82 on January 10. His birthday cake was custom-made — it had the emblems of the three Pakatan parties and the words “Selamat Hari Jadi Tok Guru”.

Karpal on his part looked thrilled to bits. The fiery politician has seen it all but this was something else. He recognised the significance of this influential leader coming to his house as Hindus passed by outside, shouting “Vel! Vel!” in praise of the deity.

“It was nice of him to come. We have our differences but we get along. My feelings even before this have been quite warm. He is one of those people whom you cannot hate, he exudes friendliness,” said Karpal.

“We went into Parliament together in 1978, you know. I remember he sat beside me.”

No one in PAS can quite recall the Mursyidul Am ever celebrating his birthday, let alone cut a birthday cake. Apparently, the more conservative segment of PAS thinks that celebrating birthdays is a western practice that they would rather not emulate.

But Nik Aziz is the ultimate consummate politician. The fact that he agreed to go to Karpal’s home on no less than on Thaipusam day says a lot about the man. It was a risky political move and only someone of his extended years and stature could dare do it.

But it was less of a birthday celebration than about sending out signals to those watching. Nik Aziz was basically telling his audience that although PAS and DAP differed regarding the thorny kalimah Allah issue, he was not above calling on its top leader.

Nik-Aziz-and-Sebastian-group-photoLater in the afternoon, he met with the new Catholic Church head for the Penang diocese, Bishop Sebastian Francis (left). The meeting was just as cordial and Nik Aziz even presented the Bishop with a cake ringed with cherries.

This time, his message was that although PAS is against the use of the term Allah in Christian Bibles, PAS leaders could still sit down and talk with Christian leaders.

Politically speaking, Nik Aziz is trying to portray a moderate image for PAS and to reach out to the middle ground, especially among the Chinese community. Hence, his visit to the house of a DAP leader.

The kalimah Allah has damaged Pakatan, particularly given that it has placed PAS on one side and DAP and PKR on the other. They are the proverbial “strange bedfellows” still living in the same house but in different bedrooms and they want to persuade voters that they are still together despite differences on this fundamental matter.

But Nik Aziz is probably aware that people inside and outside his party are bound to see all this as yet another instance of PAS dancing to DAP’s tune. But PAS needs DAP’s help to hold on to its seats in the west coast.

Critics in PAS said all these gestures benefit DAP more than their own party. They think that reaching out to Karpal is a waste of time because it is not going to change him and they are probably right.

Karpal is still enjoying the warm buzz from the visit but he said: “My stand on hudud law and the Islamic state remains the same, visit or no visit. What needs to be heard, has to be said.”

14 thoughts on “Jocelyn On the Significance of Nik Aziz’s Visit to Karpal Singh

  1. Joceline will retire with Datukship and lots of wealth, that I know… unless of course we wipe out BN first before she gets all of her perks…

  2. There is nothing wrong for any Malaysian, be they Muslims, Christain or Hindus to visit each other during festive and non-festive seasons. However, there are things that must be observed.
    One must not serve liquor or pork to a Muslim. Meat and chicken must be slaughtered the Muslim way. Likewise, Muslims must not serve meat to the Hindus. On Good Fridays, one should not serve meat to the Christains.
    If we fail to follow some decorum, be it religious or otherwise, then Malaysians will have problems.
    If the report said that Tok Guru’s birthday was celebrated in Karpal’s house, then this must be the first. Perhaps, Tok Guru was just visiting Karpal and got a surprise birthday party!
    It is not that simplistic, is it?
    Read anything between the lines. I have made up my mind. I know who to vote.

  3. Joce, ah Joce, open your eyes and circumcise your heart..
    TGNA doesn’t need to prove, provoke or portray anything at his age, wisdom and gravitas. He is who he is and a man who knows where he stands on the Ladder of Being. He is pious and humble in the manner appropriate to all – except his detractors. As he is the spiritual leader of many Muslims in this country and i, as a non-Muslim resent your insinuation that he is play acting or playing to the gallery.

    All true people of God are ecumenical, although many who claim to be so, are not so. You obviously are the latter, for you have prejudged the Motives of not only a Muslim, a Sikh but also a Catholic bishop who only wished and blessed each other well. Shame on you – but i guess you truly don’t know the meaning of the word.

    Your twisted logic and insidious commentary does not bode well for your spirit, if you have one.

  4. I propose Jocelyn to join Straits Times in Singapore once UMNO & her sidekick MCA is defeated along with BN component parties

    PAP is in trouble now…..Perhaps, Jocelyn can help

  5. Joceline is a class of her own. She works for people who treats her like dirt, hurl insults and abuse at her ancestry. Her masters are robbing the country blind and stand idly watching as the rakyat suffers. Yet she so ardently and loyally do her masters’ bidding, as if her conscience does not bother her.

    What kind of human is that?

    If I were her parents, I would wish I gave birth to a ‘char siew’ instead of her. What a disgrace to her family!

  6. Hmm.., estee @ 10:23 pm is either a dullard or has never had friends of other religions over at his/her abode. My friends and relatives of whatever religion who visit are always assured that i take their sensibilities into account. That’s Malaysian and Human.

    Whoever you are, are you Malaysian? Oh btw, i’m a Christian who eats pork for dinner on Good Friday. Most Wednesdays and Fridays i fast if i feel up to it, and i ain’t even Catholic. Will i be damned to the fires of hell for eternity?

  7. jocelyn is no doubt insinuating that there is more to it than what meets the eyes. I feel that she is mellowing in order to change camps after the election.
    she reminds me of that Hee bi… from Perak. who knows whats going on in her amphibian brain?

  8. Well, Crunch time is here. PR has started its gambit election move calling for state election in Selangor ahead of the GE. Its obviously bold strategy to go for Najib’s jugular and hopefully Federal power. IF Najib can’t win Selangor, UMNO/BN will be in a mess and chance increase for PR to Putrajaya. IF UMNO/BN win Selangor too many instances of election irregularities, Bersih 4.0 and it will play across the country. You can’t say Pakatan leaders have no guts.

  9. How much lies can The Star print further? Karpal didn’t say all those things and Joceline was not there. My brother was there. What an accomplished liar she is.
    As for the Star, lies are limitless. Jocelyn may be a biased scribbler, good at what she does and for which she is paid. I may not agree with her but I think she writes well.–Din Merican

  10. How much lies? As many stars as there are in the galaxy, thus the name Star. Joceline is a writer, a story teller, an entertainer not a factual journalist. Many journalist in Malaysia are like her living on the flavor of the day. As long as her tabloid is prepared to print she will continue writing. To hell with credibility and accountability.

  11. It does not really matter what you believe in, it is what you practice that is more important. There are far too many CARMA, and joce is definitely one of them. She is so shallow and wonder how she can be a journalist. Shame on her, and by the way, i do not read her articles.

  12. After all these years of writing to please her master, Jocelyn has still not got it right. She is not writing with her conscions but with apple polishing as her main motif. With so many commentaries spitting into her face, Jocelyn must be feeling very comfortable with the insults.

  13. “KARPAL Singh was still taking his bath when Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat and his entourage arrived at his house in Penang’s Western Road. It was the first time that the PAS leader was calling on the DAP leader, and everyone in the house was quite thrilled.”

    Is it still the custom among Malaysians never to make an appointment first before dropping on each other and to share the contents of one’s fridge, or sit down eith the family dog to have dinner when calling at dinner time. Good thing Goolbatok was not having bath together with Karpal. Otherwise this Nik Aziz would have to wait like forever they finish thier communal bath.

  14. Perhaps, Jocelyn can repeat after me after watching this message…..Ask Chua Soi Lek & the rest including Mahathir to say as well

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